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Vegetarian Science

T. Colin Campbell's book The China Study was published in 2006. It made a science-based case for a whole-food plant-based diet. To determine the currency of his arguments, a search of Pubmed articles that included the key word "vegetarian" was carried out for the period 2007 to March 2013. A review of the abstracts generated by this search was carried out to select articles that compared "vegetarian" diets to other diets, or addressed the health and safety of "vegetarian" diets. Summaries of the former articles are provided below, and these summaries include links to the original articles.

The key observation from the review is a substantiation of Campbell's arguments as presented in 2006. The benefits of a "vegetarian" diet include reduced risks of cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cataracts, diverticular disease rheumatoid arthritis and organo-chlorines.

Note however that Campbell recommended a particular type of vegetarian diet, namely a whole food, plant-based diet. Campbell's recommended diet excludes most processed plant-based foods, eggs, dairy, and recommends only a limited amount of fish. Potentially, Campbell's recommended diet could produce better results than those captured in the recent scientific studies of vegetarian diets.

The downside issues with a "vegetarian" diet (Vitamin B12 deficiency, Vitamin D deficiency, renal functions, osteoporosis) have been much studied, with the general conclusion that well-planned "vegetarian" diet is safe and healthy. A summary of these abstracts is provided separately. To see these abstracts, click here.

Over the time, the articles appear to focus less on the health and safety of "vegetarian" diets, and increasingly on the different kinds of "Vegetarian" diet (i.e. vegan; vegetarian plus eggs; vegetarian plus dairy; vegetarian plus fish; vegetarian with some combination of eggs, dairy and fish). In addition, the studies are becoming increasing more reliable as sample sizes increase.

Study Results

  1. Vegetarianism as a Protective Factor for Reflux Esophagitis: A Retrospective, Cross-Sectional Study Between Buddhist Priests and General Population by Jung JG,Kang HW,Hahn SJ,Kim JH,Lee JK,Lim YJ,Koh MS,Lee JH in Dig Dis Sci.2013 Mar 19. "The aim of this study is to elucidate the protective effect of vegetarianism for reflux esophagitis...This is a cross-sectional study that compared the prevalence of reflux esophagitis of 148 Buddhist priests, who are obligatory vegetarians with that of age- and sex-matched controls who underwent health checkups in a health promotion center...A non-vegetarian diet is associated with reflux esophagitis."
  2. Risk of hospitalization or death from ischemic heart disease among British vegetarians and nonvegetarians: results from the EPIC-Oxford cohort study by Crowe FL, Appleby PN, Travis RC, Key TJ. in Am J Clin Nutr. 2013 Mar;97(3):597-603 "The objective was to examine the association of a vegetarian diet with risk of incident (nonfatal and fatal) Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD)...Vegetarians had a 32% lower risk ... of IHD than did nonvegetarians, which was only slightly attenuated after adjustment for BMI and did not differ materially by sex, age, BMI, smoking, or the presence of IHD risk factors. Consuming a vegetarian diet was associated with lower IHD risk, a finding that is probably mediated by differences in non-HDL cholesterol, and systolic blood pressure."
  3. Systematic review and meta-analysis of different dietary approaches to the management of type 2 diabetes by Ajala O, English P, Pinkney J. in Am J Clin Nutr. 2013 Mar;97(3):505-16 "We assessed the effect of various diets on glycemic control, lipids, and weight loss...We included randomized controlled trials (RCT) with interventions that lasted =6 mo that compared low-carbohydrate, vegetarian, vegan, low-glycemic index (GI), high-fiber, Mediterranean, and high-protein diets with control diets including low-fat, high-GI, American Diabetes Association, European Association for the Study of Diabetes, and low-protein diets...The low-carbohydrate, low-GI, Mediterranean, and high-protein diets all led to a greater improvement in glycemic control...compared with their respective control diets, with the largest effect size seen in the Mediterranean diet. Low-carbohydrate and Mediterranean diets led to greater weight loss...with an increase in HDL seen in all diets except the high-protein diet."
  4. The effect of lifestyle food on chronic diseases: a comparison between vegetarians and non-vegetarians in Jordan by Alrabadi NI in Glob J Health Sci. 2012 Nov 4;5(1):65-9. "This cross sectional study...compared these (chronic) diseases between vegetarians and non- vegetarians in Jordan in 2012...(C)hronic diseases including Diabetes, Hypertension, and Obesity were more prevalence among non-vegetarians compared to vegetarian respondents."
  5. Vegetarian diets and the incidence of cancer in a low-risk population by Tantamango-Bartley Y, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Fan J, Fraser G in Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2013 Feb;22(2):286-94. "...We examined the association between dietary patterns (non-vegetarians, lacto, pesco, vegan, and semi-vegetarian) and the overall cancer incidence among 69,120 participants of the Adventist Health Study-2...Vegetarian diets seem to confer protection against cancer... Vegan diet seems to confer lower risk for overall and female-specific cancer than other dietary patterns. The lacto-ovo-vegetarian diets seem to confer protection from cancers of the gastrointestinal tract.
  6. Vegetarian diets, low-meat diets and health: a review by McEvoy CT, Temple N, Woodside JV in Public Health Nutr. 2012 Dec;15(12):2287-94. "...Both vegetarian diets and prudent diets allowing small amounts of red meat are associated with reduced risk of diseases, particularly CHD and type 2 diabetes. There is limited evidence of an association between vegetarian diets and cancer prevention. Evidence linking red meat intake, particularly processed meat, and increased risk of CHD, cancer and type 2 diabetes is convincing and provides indirect support for consumption of a plant-based diet...At this time an optimal dietary intake for health status is unknown. Plant-based diets contain a host of food and nutrients known to have independent health benefits."
  7. Cardiovascular disease mortality and cancer incidence in vegetarians: a meta-analysis and systematic review by Huang T, Yang B, Zheng J, Li G, Wahlqvist ML, Li D in Ann Nutr Metab. 2012;60(4):233-40. "...The objective of the ... meta-analysis was to investigate cardiovascular disease mortality and cancer incidence among vegetarians and nonvegetarians...Our results suggest that vegetarians have a significantly lower ischemic heart disease mortality (29%) and overall cancer incidence (18%) than nonvegetarians."
  8. Long-term vegetarians have low oxidative stress, body fat, and cholesterol levels by Kim MK, Cho SW, Park YK in Nutr Res Pract. 2012 Apr;6(2):155-61. "...We compared biomarkers of oxidative stress, antioxidant capacity, and lipid profiles of sex- and age-matched long-term vegetarians and omnivores in Korea...(O)xidative stress, body fat, and cholesterol levels were lower in long-term vegetarians than those in omnivores."
  9. Chinese lacto-vegetarian diet exerts favorable effects on metabolic parameters, intima-media thickness, and cardiovascular risks in healthy men by Yang SY, Li XJ, Zhang W, Liu CQ, Zhang HJ, Lin JR, Yan B, Yu YX, Shi XL, Li CD, Li WH in Nutr Clin Pract. 2012 Jun;27(3):392-8. "...To investigate whether the Chinese lacto-vegetarian diet has protective effects on metabolic and cardiovascular disease (CVD)...Compared with omnivores, lacto-vegetarians had remarkably lower body mass index, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and serum levels of triglyceride, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, apolipoprotein B, ?-glutamyl transferase, serum creatinine, uric acid, fasting blood glucose, as well as lower total cholesterol/high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio. Vegetarians also had higher homeostasis model assessment ? cell function and insulin secretion index and thinner carotid IMT than the omnivores did. These results corresponded with lower cardiovascular risk points and probability of developing CVD in 5-10 years in vegetarians 24-55 years old."
  10. Restriction of meat, fish, and poultry in omnivores improves mood: a pilot randomized controlled trial by Beezhold BL, Johnston CS in Nutr J. 2012 Feb 14;11:9. "...This study investigated the impact of restricting meat, fish, and poultry on mood...Restricting meat, fish, and poultry improved some domains of short-term mood state in modern omnivores."
  11. Vegetarian diets and blood pressure among white subjects: results from the Adventist Health Study-2 (AHS-2) by Pettersen BJ, Anousheh R, Fan J, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Fraser GE in Public Health Nutr. 2012 Oct;15(10):1909-16. "...(T)he vegan vegetarians had lower systolic and diastolic BP (mmHg) than omnivorous Adventists... Findings for lacto-ovo vegetarians ... were similar...We conclude from this relatively large study that vegetarians, especially vegans, with otherwise diverse characteristics but stable diets, do have lower systolic and diastolic BP and less hypertension than omnivores. This is only partly due to their lower body mass.
  12. Selected biomarkers of age-related diseases in older subjects with different nutrition by Krajcovicova-Kudlackova M, Babinska K, Blazicek P, Valachovicova M, Spustova V, Mislanova C, Paukova V. in Bratisl Lek Listy. 2011;112(11):610-3. "...Markers of age-related diseases (cardiovascular, metabolic syndrome, diabetes) were assessed in two nutritional groups ... vegetarians (lacto-ovo-vegetarians and semi-vegetarians) and ... non-vegetarians...Vegetarian values of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, triacylglycerols, C-reactive protein, glucose, insulin and insulin resistance are significantly reduced. Non-vegetarian average values of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and C-reactive protein are risk. Vegetarians have a better antioxidative status (significantly increased vitamin C, lipid-standardized vitamine E and beta-carotene plasma concentrations)"
  13. Relation between dietary and circulating lipids in lacto-ovo vegetarians by Fernandes Dourado K, de Arruda C?mara E Siqueira Campos F, Sakugava Shinohara NK in Nutr Hosp. 2011 Sep-Oct;26(5):959-64. "The aim of the present study was to compare diet, lipid profile and blood pressure levels in Brazilian lacto-ovo vegetarians and non-vegetarians...No differences were found regarding nutritional status based on the BMI...Regarding blood pressure, the only difference between groups was systolic arterial pressure, which was higher among the non-vegetarians...Mean total cholesterol and LDL were higher among non-vegetarians. Mean serum TG (triglyceride) was higher among the vegetarians. The greater consumption of carbohydrates among the vegetarians was reflected in the higher serum triglyceride levels.
  14. Vegetarian diets and incidence of diabetes in the Adventist Health Study-2 by Tonstad S, Stewart K, Oda K, Batech M, Herring RP, Fraser GE in Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2013 Apr;23(4):292-9. "To evaluate the relationship of diet to incident diabetes among non-Black and Black participants in the Adventist Health Study-2...Participants were grouped as vegan, lacto ovo vegetarian, pesco vegetarian, semi-vegetarian or non-vegetarian (reference group)...Vegetarian diets (vegan, lacto ovo, semi-) were associated with a substantial and independent reduction in diabetes incidence. In Blacks the dimension of the protection associated with vegetarian diets was as great as the excess risk associated with Black ethnicity."
  15. Veganism does not reduce the risk of the metabolic syndrome in a Taiwanese cohort by Shang P, Shu Z, Wang Y, Li N, Du S, Sun F, Xia Y, Zhan S in Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2011;20(3):404-10. "The purpose of the present study was to assess the risk of the metabolic syndrome (MS) with vegan, pescovegetarian, lactovegetarian and nonvegetarian diets in Taiwan...Our data suggest that the vegan diets did not decrease the risk of metabolic syndrome compared with pescovegetarian, lactovegetarian and nonvegetarian diets in a Taiwanese cohort."
  16. Diet and risk of diverticular disease in Oxford cohort of European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC): prospective study of British vegetarians and non-vegetarians by Crowe FL, Appleby PN, Allen NE, Key TJ in BMJ. 2011 Jul 19;343:d4131. "...To examine the associations of a vegetarian diet and dietary fibre intake with risk of diverticular disease...Consuming a vegetarian diet and a high intake of dietary fibre were both associated with a lower risk of admission to hospital or death from diverticular disease.
  17. A vegetarian dietary pattern as a nutrient-dense approach to weight management: an analysis of the national health and nutrition examination survey 1999-2004 by Farmer B, Larson BT, Fulgoni VL 3rd, Rainville AJ, Liepa GU in J Am Diet Assoc. 2011 Jun;111(6):819-27. "...To compare dietary quality of vegetarians, nonvegetarians, and dieters, and to test the hypothesis that a vegetarian diet would not compromise nutrient intake when used to manage body weight...Mean intakes of fiber, vitamins A, C, and E, thiamin, riboflavin, folate, calcium, magnesium, and iron were higher for all vegetarians than for all nonvegetarians. Although vegetarian intakes of vitamin E, vitamin A, and magnesium exceeded that of nonvegetarians ..., both groups had intakes that were less than desired. ...These findings suggest that vegetarian diets are nutrient dense, consistent with dietary guidelines, and could be recommended for weight management without compromising diet quality.
  18. Nutritional status, lifestyle and cardiovascular risk in lacto-ovo vegetarians and omnivore] by Fernandes Dourado K, Campos Fde A, Rojas HF, Simi?es SK, de Siqueira LP in Arch Latinoam Nutr. 2010 Sep;60(3):220-6. "The aim of the present study was to assess socioeconomic characteristics, dietary intake, nutritional status and cardiovascular risk (using anthropometric indicators of central obesity) in lacto-ovo vegetarians and non-vegetarians...The results of the present study suggest that, although a lacto-ovovegetarian diet is considered healthier due to the lower consumption of total fat, saturated fatty acids and cholesterol, there are no significant differences in nutritional status or anthropometric indicators of cardiovascular risk when lifestyle and total calorie intake are similar.
  19. Vegetarian diet improves insulin resistance and oxidative stress markers more than conventional diet in subjects with Type 2 diabetes by Kahleova H, Matoulek M, Malinska H, Oliyarnik O, Kazdova L, Neskudla T, Skoch A, Hajek M, Hill M, Kahle M, Pelikanova T. inDiabet Med. 2011 May;28(5):549-59. "The aim of this study was to compare the effects of calorie-restricted vegetarian and conventional diabetic diets alone and in combination with exercise on insulin resistance, visceral fat and oxidative stress markers in subjects with Type 2 diabetes...Forty-three per cent of participants in the experimental group and 5% of participants in the control group reduced diabetes medication... Body weight decreased more in the experimental group than in the control group...An increase in insulin sensitivity was significantly greater in the experimental group than in the control group...A reduction in both visceral and subcutaneous fat was greater in the experimental group than in the control group...Differences between groups were greater after the addition of exercise training. Changes in insulin sensitivity and enzymatic oxidative stress markers correlated with changes in visceral fat...The greater loss of visceral fat and improvements in plasma concentrations of adipokines and oxidative stress markers with this diet may be responsible for the reduction of insulin resistance. The addition of exercise training further augmented the improved outcomes with the vegetarian diet."
  20. Diet, vegetarianism, and cataract risk by Appleby PN, Allen NE, Key TJ in Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 May;93(5):1128-35. "We investigated the association between diet and cataract risk in a population that has a wide range of diets and includes a high proportion of vegetarians...There was a strong relation between cataract risk and diet group, with a progressive decrease in risk of cataract in high meat eaters to low meat eaters, fish eaters (participants who ate fish but not meat), vegetarians, and vegans...Vegetarians were at lower risk of cataract than were meat eaters in this cohort of health-conscious British residents."
  21. Vegetarian dietary patterns are associated with a lower risk of metabolic syndrome: the adventist health study 2 by Rizzo NS, Sabat? J, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Fraser GE in Diabetes Care. 2011 May;34(5):1225-7. "The study objective was to compare dietary patterns in their relationship with metabolic risk factors (MRFs) and the metabolic syndrome (MetS)...A vegetarian dietary pattern was associated with significantly lower means for all MRFs except HDL ...and a lower risk of having MetS ... when compared with a nonvegetarian dietary pattern...A vegetarian dietary pattern is associated with a more favorable profile of MRFs and a lower risk of MetS. The relationship persists after adjusting for lifestyle and demographic factors."
  22. Nutrition concerns and health effects of vegetarian diets by Craig WJ in Nutr Clin Pract. 2010 Dec;25(6):613-20. "...When a vegetarian diet is appropriately planned and includes fortified foods, it can be nutritionally adequate for adults and children and can promote health and lower the risk of major chronic diseases. The nutrients of concern in the diet of vegetarians include vitamin B(12), vitamin D, Omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, iron, and zinc...(V)egetarians typically have lower body mass index, serum total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, and blood pressure; reduced rates of death from ischemic heart disease; and decreased incidence of hypertension, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers than do nonvegetarians."
  23. Comparison of renal function and other health outcomes in vegetarians versus omnivores in Taiwan by Lin CK, Lin DJ, Yen CH, Chen SC, Chen CC, Wang TY, Chou MC, Chang HR, Lee MC in J Health Popul Nutr. 2010 Oct;28(5):470-5. "...The study explored the effects of both the diets (diet of plant origin, and diet of plant and animal origin) on renal functions. The study subjects included 102 Buddhist nun vegetarians and an equal number of matched control group (omnivores)...There was no difference in the renal functions between the two groups. However, systolic blood pressure, blood urea nitrogen, serum sodium, glucose, cholesterol levels, and urinary specific gravity were lower in the vegetarian group."
  24. Plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in meat eaters, fish eaters, vegetarians and vegans: results from the EPIC-Oxford study by Crowe FL, Steur M, Allen NE, Appleby PN, Travis RC, Key TJ in Public Health Nutr. 2011 Feb;14(2):340-6. "Vegetarians and vegans exclude certain food sources of vitamin D from their diet, but it is not clear to what extent this affects plasma concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). The objective was to investigate differences in vitamin D intake and plasma concentrations of 25(OH)D among meat eaters, fish eaters, vegetarians and vegans...Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were lower in vegetarians and vegans than in meat and fish eaters; diet is an important determinant of plasma 25(OH)D in this British population."
  25. Serum concentrations of vitamin B12 and folate in British male omnivores, vegetarians and vegans: results from a cross-sectional analysis of the EPIC-Oxford cohort study by Gilsing AM, Crowe FL, Lloyd-Wright Z, Sanders TA, Appleby PN, Allen NE, Key TJ in Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 Sep;64(9):933-9. "...The objectives of this study were to investigate differences in serum vitamin B12 and folate concentrations between omnivores, vegetarians and vegans and to ascertain whether vitamin B12 concentrations differed by age and time on the diet...In all, 52% of vegans, 7% of vegetarians and one omnivore were classified as vitamin B12 deficient...There was no significant association between age or duration of adherence to a vegetarian or a vegan diet and serum vitamin B12. In contrast, folate concentrations were highest among vegans, intermediate among vegetarians and lowest among omnivores, but only two men (both omnivores) were categorized as folate deficient ..."
  26. Relationship between major dietary patterns and metabolic syndrome among individuals with impaired glucose tolerance by Amini M, Esmaillzadeh A, Shafaeizadeh S, Behrooz J, Zare M in Nutrition. 2010 Oct;26(10):986-92 "...This study focused on the association between major dietary patterns and prevalence of the metabolic syndrome in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance...Five major dietary patterns were found: a western pattern (high in sweets, butter, soda, mayonnaise, sugar, cookies, tail of a lamb, hydrogenated fat, and eggs), a prudent pattern (high in fish, peas, honey, nuts, juice, dry fruits, vegetable oil, liver and organic meat, and coconuts and low in hydrogenated fat and non-leafy vegetables), a vegetarian pattern (high in potatoes, legumes, fruits rich in vitamin C, rice, green leafy vegetables, and fruits rich in vitamin A), a high-fat dairy pattern (high in high-fat yogurt and high-fat milk and low in low-fat yogurt, peas, and bread), and a chicken and plant pattern (high in chicken, fruits rich in vitamin A, green leafy vegetables, and mayonnaise and low in beef, liver, and organic meat). After adjusting for confounding variables, the western pattern was associated with greater odds of having increased triacylglycerol ... and blood pressure... The prudent pattern was positively associated with a prevalence of low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels... The vegetarian dietary pattern was inversely associated with a risk of an abnormal fasting blood glucose level..."
  27. Nutritional status of Flemish vegetarians compared with non-vegetarians: a matched samples study by Deriemaeker P, Alewaeters K, Hebbelinck M, Lefevre J, Philippaerts R, Clarys P in Nutrients. 2010 Jul;2(7):770-80. "The present study compares the nutritional status of vegetarian (V) with non-vegetarian (NV) subjects...Our results clearly indicate that a vegetarian diet can be adequate to sustain the nutritional demands to at least the same degree as that of omnivores. The intakes of the V subjects were closer to the recommendations for a healthy diet when compared to a group of well matched NV subjects."
  28. Haematological, biochemical and bone density parameters in vegetarians and non-vegetarians by Sambol SZ, Stimac D, Orlic ZC, Guina T in West Indian Med J. 2009 Dec;58(6):512-7. "The objective is to determine any possible differences between haematological, biochemical and bone mineral density in vegetarians (vegans and lacto-ovovegetarians) and non-vegetarians...The results showed that lacto-ovovegetarians had statistically significantly higher red blood cell counts and haematocrit values than non-vegetarians. Vegans also had higher haematocrit values than non-vegetarians. Statistically significant differences were found between iron plasma levels in the examined groups. Iron levels were lower in non-vegetarians than in vegans and lacto-ovovegetarians. Non-vegetarians had much higher levels of cholesterol, triglycerides and LDL than the other two groups, but there were no differences found between same values in vegans and lacto-ovovegetarians...A well planned and balanced vegetarian diet, with avoidance of risk factors, does not result in abnormalities in laboratory tests and bone status parameters."
  29. Vegetarian diets are associated with healthy mood states: a cross-sectional study in seventh day adventist adults by Beezhold BL, Johnston CS, Daigle DR in Nutr J. 2010 Jun 1;9:26. "...We examined associations between mood state and polyunsaturated fatty acid intake as a result of adherence to a vegetarian or omnivorous diet...Vegetarians ... reported significantly less negative emotion than omnivores... VEG reported significantly lower mean intakes of EPA ..., as well as the omega-6 fatty acid, arachidonic acid ..., and reported higher mean intakes of shorter-chain alpha-linolenic acid ... and linoleic acid...(P)articipants with low intakes of EPA, DHA, and AA and high intakes of ALA and LA had better mood...The vegetarian diet profile does not appear to adversely affect mood despite low intake of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids."
  30. Vegetarian diets and childhood obesity prevention by Sabat? J, Wien M in Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 May;91(5):1525S-1529S. "...The focus of this article is to review the relation between vegetarian diets and obesity, particularly as they relate to childhood obesity. Epidemiologic studies indicate that vegetarian diets are associated with a lower body mass index (BMI) and a lower prevalence of obesity in adults and children. A meta-analysis of adult vegetarian diet studies estimated a reduced weight difference of 7.6 kg for men and 3.3 kg for women, which resulted in a 2-point lower BMI... Similarly, compared with nonvegetarians, vegetarian children are leaner, and their BMI difference becomes greater during adolescence..."
  31. Nutrient based estimation of acid-base balance in vegetarians and non-vegetarians by Deriemaeker P, Aerenhouts D, Hebbelinck M, Clarys P in Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2010 Mar;65(1):77-82. "... The findings of this study indicate that vegetarian food intake produces more alkaline outcomes compared to non-vegetarian diets. The use of the standard PRAL table was sufficient for discrimination between the two diets."
  32. Impact of adopting a vegan diet or an olestra supplementation on plasma organochlorine concentrations: results from two pilot studies by Arguin H, S?nchez M, Bray GA, Lovejoy JC, Peters JC, Jandacek RJ, Chaput JP, Tremblay A in Br J Nutr. 2010 May;103(10):1433-41. "...The aim of these studies was to evaluate the potential of some nutritional approaches to prevent or reduce the body load of organochlorines (OC) in humans. Study 1 compared plasma OC concentrations between vegans and omnivores while study 2 verified if the dietary fat substitute olestra could prevent the increase in OC concentrations that is generally observed in response to a weight-reducing programme...In study 1, plasma concentrations of five OC compounds (aroclor 1260 and PCB 99, PCB 138, PCB 153 and PCB 180) were significantly lower in vegans compared with omnivores. In study 2, beta-HCH was the only OC which decreased in the fat-substituted group while increasing in the other two groups... In conclusion, there was a trend toward lesser contamination in vegans than in omnivores, and olestra had a favourable influence on beta-HCH but did not prevent plasma hyperconcentration of the other OC during ongoing weight loss.
  33. Dietary patterns and adult asthma: population-based case-control study by Bakolis I, Hooper R, Thompson RL, Shaheen SO in Allergy. 2010 May;65(5):606-15. "...We carried out a population-based case-control study of asthma in adults aged between 16 and 50 in South London, UK.... A 'prudent' dietary pattern (wholemeal bread, fish and vegetables) was positively associated with chronic bronchitis ... Overall there were no clear relations between dietary patterns and adult asthma..."
  34. Enhanced bone metabolism in vegetarians--the role of vitamin B12 deficiency by Herrmann W, Obeid R, Schorr H, H?bner U, Geisel J, Sand-Hill M, Ali N, Herrmann M in Clin Chem Lab Med. 2009;47(11):1381-7. "...Vitamin B12 deficiency and bone fractures are common in vegetarians. However, a direct relationship between vitamin B12 status and bone metabolism in vegetarians has not been tested sufficiently...Low vitamin B12 status is related to increased bone turnover in vegetarians which is independent from vitamin D status."
  35. Effects of plant-based diets on plasma lipids by Ferdowsian HR, Barnard ND in Am J Cardiol. 2009 Oct 1;104(7):947-56. "...The investigators ...reviewed the published scientific research to determine the effectiveness of plant-based diets in modifying plasma lipid concentrations...Of the 4 types of plant-based diets considered, interventions testing a combination diet (a vegetarian or vegan diet combined with nuts, soy, and/or fiber) demonstrated the greatest effects ..., followed by vegan and ovolactovegetarian diets. Interventions allowing small amounts of lean meat demonstrated less dramatic reductions in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein levels."
  36. The association between high plasma homocysteine levels and lower bone mineral density in Slovak women: the impact of vegetarian diet by Krivosikova Z, Krajcovicova-Kudlickova M, Spustova V, Stefikova K, Valachovicova M, Blazicek P, Nemcova T in Eur J Nutr. 2010 Apr;49(3):147-53. "...To assess the possible impact of a vegetarian diet on bone mineral density in cohort of Slovak vegetarian women...Vegetarians had a significantly lower weight ..., and homocysteine...Vitamin B(12) was significantly higher in nonvegetarians... No differences were observed in folate levels...Homocysteine is one of the predictors of bone mineral density...In healthy adults, homocysteine levels are dependent on age as well as on nutritional habits. Thus, elderly women on a vegetarian diet seem to be at higher risk of osteoporosis development than nonvegetarian women."
  37. Relationship between animal protein intake and muscle mass index in healthy women by Aubertin-Leheudre M, Adlercreutz Hi in Br J Nutr. 2009 Dec;102(12):1803-10. "...The aim was to examine the relationship between the type of protein intake and the level of muscle mass in healthy omnivorous and vegetarian Caucasian women...(A) vegetarian diet is associated with a lower muscle mass index than is an omnivorous diet at the same protein intake...."
  38. Effect of vegetarian diets on bone mineral density: a Bayesian meta-analysis by Ho-Pham LT, Nguyen ND, Nguyen TV in Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Oct;90(4):943-50. "...The aim of this study was to estimate the effect of vegetarian diets on BMD (bone mineral density) by using a meta-analytic approach...The results suggest that vegetarian diets, particularly vegan diets, are associated with lower BMD, but the magnitude of the association is clinically insignificant."
  39. Cancer incidence in British vegetarians by Key TJ, Appleby PN, Spencer EA, Travis RC, Allen NE, Thorogood M, Mann JI in Br J Cancer. 2009 Jul 7;101(1):192-7. "...We studied 61,566 British men and women, comprising 32,403 meat eaters, 8562 non-meat eaters who did eat fish ('fish eaters') and 20,601 vegetarians. After an average follow-up of 12.2 years, there were 3350 incident cancers of which 2204 were among meat eaters, 317 among fish eaters and 829 among vegetarians...The incidence of some cancers may be lower in fish eaters and vegetarians than in meat eaters."
  40. DHA status of vegetarians by Sanders TA in Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 2009 Aug-Sep;81(2-3):137-41. "...To review DHA status in vegetarians and vegans...Dietary analyses show that vegan diets are devoid of DHA and vegetarian diets that included dairy food and eggs only provide about 0.02 g DHA/d. Vegetarian and especially vegan diets supply more linoleic acid ... than omnivore diets. The intake of alpha-linolenic acid ... also tends to be similar or greater but depends on culinary oils used. The proportions of DHA in plasma, blood cells, breast milk, and tissues are substantially lower in vegans and vegetarians compared with omnivores. The lower proportions of DHA are accompanied by correspondingly higher proportions of the long-chain derivatives of linoleic acid, indicating that the capacity to synthesize long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids is not limited. Short-term dietary supplementation with alpha-linolenic acid ... does not increase the proportion of DHA in blood lipids...There is no evidence of adverse effects on health or cognitive function with lower DHA intake in vegetarians..."
  41. Vegetarian and vegan diets in type 2 diabetes management by Barnard ND, Katcher HI, Jenkins DJ, Cohen J, Turner-McGrievy G in Nutr Rev. 2009 May;67(5):255-63. "...The presently available literature indicates that vegetarian and vegan diets present potential advantages for the management of type 2 diabetes."
  42. Type of vegetarian diet, body weight, and prevalence of type 2 diabetes by Tonstad S, Butler T, Yan R, Fraser GE in Diabetes Care. 2009 May;32(5):791-6. "...We assessed the prevalence of type 2 diabetes in people following different types of vegetarian diets compared with that in nonvegetarians...The 5-unit BMI difference between vegans and nonvegetarians indicates a substantial potential of vegetarianism to protect against obesity. Increased conformity to vegetarian diets protected against risk of type 2 diabetes after lifestyle characteristics and BMI were taken into account. Pesco- and semi-vegetarian diets afforded intermediate protection."
  43. Veganism, bone mineral density, and body composition: a study in Buddhist nuns by Ho-Pham LT, Nguyen PL, Le TT, Doan TA, Tran NT, Le TA, Nguyen TV in Osteoporos Int. 2009 Dec;20(12):2087-93. "...(A)lthough vegans had lower dietary calcium and protein intakes than omnivores, veganism did not have adverse effect on bone mineral density and did not alter body composition....(A)lthough vegans have much lower intakes of dietary calcium and protein than omnivores, veganism does not have adverse effect on bone mineral density and does not alter body composition.
  44. A low-fat vegan diet and a conventional diabetes diet in the treatment of type 2 diabetes: a randomized, controlled, 74-wk clinical trial by Barnard ND, Cohen J, Jenkins DJ, Turner-McGrievy G, Gloede L, Green A, Ferdowsian H in Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 May;89(5):1588S-1596S. "...We compared the effects of a low-fat vegan diet and conventional diabetes diet recommendations on glycemia, weight, and plasma lipids...Both diets were associated with sustained reductions in weight and plasma lipid concentrations. In an analysis controlling for medication changes, a low-fat vegan diet appeared to improve glycemia and plasma lipids more than did conventional diabetes diet recommendations. Whether the observed differences provide clinical benefit for the macro- or microvascular complications of diabetes remains to be established..."
  45. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D status of vegetarians, partial vegetarians, and nonvegetarians: the Adventist Health Study-2 by Chan J, Jaceldo-Siegl K, Fraser GE in Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 May;89(5):1686S-1692S. "...We assessed serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [s25(OH)D] concentrations and factors affecting them in vegetarians, partial vegetarians, and nonvegetarians in a sample of calibration study subjects...s25(OH)D concentrations were not associated with vegetarian status. Other factors, such as vitamin D supplementation, degree of skin pigmentation, and amount and intensity of sun exposure have greater influence on s25(OH)D than does diet."
  46. Cancer incidence in vegetarians: results from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC-Oxford) by Key TJ, Appleby PN, Spencer EA, Travis RC, Roddam AW, Allen NE in Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 May;89(5):1620S-1626S. "...This was a prospective study of 63,550 men and women recruited throughout the United Kingdom in the 1990s. Cancer incidence was followed through nationwide cancer registries...The overall cancer incidence rates of both the vegetarians and the nonvegetarians in this study are low compared with national rates. Within the study, the incidence of all cancers combined was lower among vegetarians than among meat eaters, but the incidence of colorectal cancer was higher in vegetarians than in meat eaters."
  47. Mortality in British vegetarians: results from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC-Oxford) by Key TJ, Appleby PN, Spencer EA, Travis RC, Roddam AW, Allen NE in Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 May;89(5):1613S-1619S. "...We present results on mortality among vegetarians and nonvegetarians in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC-Oxford)...The mortality of both the vegetarians and the nonvegetarians in this study is low compared with national rates. Within the study, mortality from circulatory diseases and all causes is not significantly different between vegetarians and meat eaters, but the study is not large enough to exclude small or moderate differences for specific causes of death..."
  48. Changes in nutrient intake and dietary quality among participants with type 2 diabetes following a low-fat vegan diet or a conventional diabetes diet for 22 weeks by Turner-McGrievy GM, Barnard ND, Cohen J, Jenkins DJ, Gloede L, Green AA in J Am Diet Assoc. 2008 Oct;108(10):1636-45. "...To assess the changes in nutrient intake and dietary quality among participants following a low-fat vegan diet or the 2003 American Diabetes Association dietary recommendations....Vegan diets increase intakes of carbohydrate, fiber, and several micronutrients, in contrast with the American Diabetes Association recommended diet. The vegan group improved its AHEI score whereas the American Diabetes Association recommended diet group's AHEI score remained unchanged."
  49. The low-methionine content of vegan diets may make methionine restriction feasible as a life extension strategy by McCarty MF, Barroso-Aranda J, Contreras F by Med Hypotheses. 2009 Feb;72(2):125-8. "Recent studies confirm that dietary methionine restriction increases both mean and maximal lifespan in rats and mice, achieving "aging retardant"...(I)t may be more feasible to achieve moderate methionine restriction, in light of the fact that vegan diets tend to be relatively low in this amino acid. Plant proteins - especially those derived from legumes or nuts - tend to be lower in methionine than animal proteins. Furthermore, the total protein content of vegan diets, as a function of calorie content, tends to be lower than that of omnivore diets, and plant protein has somewhat lower bioavailability than animal protein..."
  50. Alteration of cardiovascular autonomic functions by vegetarian diets in postmenopausal women is related to LDL cholesterol levels by Fu CH, Yang CC, Lin CL, Kuo TB in Chin J Physiol. 2008 Apr 30;51(2):100-5. "This study was designed to test the hypothesis that alteration of cardiovascular autonomic functions by vegetarian diets in healthy postmenopausal women is related to lipid metabolism...The vegetarians had statistically significant lowered blood pressure, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, triglyceride, and fasting glucose levels compared with the omnivores...Total power, LF and HF of HRV, Brr(LF), and Brr(HF) were significantly and negatively correlated with LDL-cholesterol concentrations...We concluded that the increases of cardiac vagal activity and baroreflex sensitivity by vegetarian diets in postmenopausal women are inversely related to LDL-cholesterol levels."
  51. The relative impact of a vegetable-rich diet on key markers of health in a cohort of Australian adolescents by Grant R, Bilgin A, Zeuschner C, Guy T, Pearce R, Hokin B, Ashton J. in Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2008;17(1):107-15. "...We compared key physiological and biochemical markers of health against responses to a modified, Schools Physical Activity and Nutrition Survey (SPANS)...Adolescents consuming predominantly vegetarian foods showed significantly better scores on markers of cardiovascular health, including, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, Cholesterol/High density lipoprotein ratio and low density lipoprotein. Adolescents consuming nuts more than once per week, also showed lower scores for BMI and serum glucose irrespective of their vegetarian status. Markers of general health including haemoglobin and average height were not different between groups; however a lower serum level of vitamin B12 was apparent in the vegetarian cohort. Surprisingly, exercise on its own was not statistically associated with any of the risk factors tested suggesting that diet may be the most significant factor in promoting health in this age group."
  52. Gluten-free vegan diet induces decreased LDL and oxidized LDL levels and raised atheroprotective natural antibodies against phosphorylcholine in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a randomized study by Elkan AC, Sj?berg B, Kolsrud B, Ringertz B, Hafstr?m I, Frosteg?rd J in Arthritis Res Ther. 2008;10(2):R34. "...The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of vegan diet in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) on blood lipids oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) and natural atheroprotective antibodies against phosphorylcholine (anti-PCs)...A gluten-free vegan diet in RA induces changes that are potentially atheroprotective and anti-inflammatory, including decreased LDL and oxLDL levels and raised anti-PC IgM and IgA levels."
  53. A very-low-fat vegan diet increases intake of protective dietary factors and decreases intake of pathogenic dietary factors by Dewell A, Weidner G, Sumner MD, Chi CS, Ornish D in J Am Diet Assoc. 2008 Feb;108(2):347-56. "...This study examined protective (eg, antioxidant vitamins, carotenoids, and fiber) and pathogenic (eg, saturated fatty acids and cholesterol) dietary factors in a very-low-fat vegan diet...These results suggest that a very-low-fat vegan diet can be useful in increasing intake of protective nutrients and phytochemicals and minimizing intake of dietary factors implicated in several chronic diseases."
  54. Cardiovascular risk in vegetarians and omnivores: a comparative study by Teixeira Rde, Molina Mdel, Zandonade E, Mill JG in Arq Bras Cardiol. 2007 Oct;89(4):237-44 "...To describe and analyze the cardiovascular risk (CVR) in vegetarians and omnivores residing in Greater Vit?ria, State of Esp?rito Santo, Brazil, in the age range from 35 to 64...Unbalanced omnivorous diet with excess animal protein and fat may be implicated, to a great extent, in the development of noncommunicable diseases and conditions, especially in the CVR."
  55. From beans to berries and beyond: teamwork between plant chemicals for protection of optimal human health by Lila MA in Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2007 Oct;1114:372-80. "...In order to investigate the strength of natural chemical cooperation in highly-pigmented, flavonoid-rich functional foods, our lab has relied on analysis of both whole fruits, and continuous, reliable plant cell culture production systems which accumulate anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins in high concentrations. Successive rounds of relatively gentle, rapid, and large-volume fractionations are linked to bioassay of complex to simple mixtures and semi-purified compounds. By means of this strategy, additive interactions or synergies between related compounds in health maintenance can be sorted out. Interestingly, phytochemical interactions between the same classes of compounds intensify the efficacy of flavonoid-rich fruits against multiple, not necessarily discrete, human disease conditions including CVD, cancer, metabolic syndrome, and others."
  56. A two-year randomized weight loss trial comparing a vegan diet to a more moderate low-fat diet by Turner-McGrievy GM, Barnard ND, Scialli AR in Obesity (Silver Spring). 2007 Sep;15(9):2276-81. "...The objective was to assess the effect of a low-fat, vegan diet compared with the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) diet on weight loss maintenance at 1 and 2 years...A vegan diet was associated with significantly greater weight loss than the NCEP diet at 1 and 2 years. Both group support and meeting attendance were associated with significant weight loss at follow-up."
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